The title of this book, Buttermilk Graffiti, is poetic shorthand for my life. Buttermilk is the iconic ingredient of the American South, one that I not only learned to cook with, but grew to love. Graffiti is the art form that first inspired my identity, the thing that connects me to the memories of my youth in Brooklyn in the 1980s. (Kindle location 102)I devoured this book in record time and I am confident the CTB members will as well. (Lee was an English major and I think it’s evident in his writing and style.) Lee travels on his quest to Louisiana, Massachusetts, Brooklyn, Michigan, Florida, Appalachia (with Ronni Lundy), the Mississippi Delta, Alabama, Connecticut, Washington, Texas, New Jersey, Kentucky, Wisconsin, and Illinois. I’ve listed the states/regions he visits here, but Lee is journeying to each area for specific cuisines in specific cities (like the slaw dog and or food of specific cultures).
Edward Lee is the author of Smoke & Pickles and Buttermilk Graffiti. He is the chef/owner/culinary director of numerous restaurants in Kentucky, Maryland, and D.C. I first became aware of Lee through his role in the Emmy Award-winning series The Mind of a Chef. Fermented, a feature-length documentary, is another recent project (2017). He splits his time between Louisville, KY and Washington, DC.
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